Developing a Mission

The Columbus, GA Poverty Reduction Lab explores high-impact strategies to create one connected regional system of services to equip families, with children 0-5 years of age, with the resources needed to achieve financial self-sufficiency, promote economic equity, and continually improve opportunities across generations.

The Columbus, GA Poverty Reduction Lab Leadership Team.

The Columbus, GA Poverty Reduction Lab Leadership Team.

Developing a mission is no easy task. When embarking on a new initiative, leaders and teams often have a general, big-picture idea of what they hope to achieve in the end. Refining a large idea into high-level processes that resonate with both the leaders and the recipients of the initiative requires transparent communication, a supportive environment where dissenting opinions can safely be voiced and navigated, and clarity around the “why” of the initiative. It takes a lot of work! Having a clear mission statement, though, is a way for organizations to share goals they are pursuing, highlight values that are important to them, and keep their attention on their desired outcomes.

CQIU believes it is important not only for organizations to have mission statements, but also to develop mission statements for individual projects, especially if they are large-scale initiatives. Having a clear mission gives team members clarity around the work they are doing, understand why they are doing it, and eliminate non-essential tasks that might try to creep into the workload. Taking the upfront time to develop a clear mission statement, with input from leaders and clients that are in involved, supports both positive processes and positive outcomes. It allows process owners to operate with efficiency— to systematically pursue the small steps needed to reach the main goal, and say no to distractions that are not supportive of the mission.

We were thrilled to facilitate the development of a mission statement and 90-day, 1-year, and 10-year SMART goals for our partners in Columbus, Georgia who are developing a Poverty Reduction Lab. This group has spent some time developing their working relationships with one another, acknowledging the different perspectives at the table (from client to executive), and understanding what each person hopes to accomplish.